You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.

Jeremiah 29:13

At the start of the month we are nearly five full weeks into the Lenten season. On April 3rd we enter into Passiontide, the last two weeks of Lent, a time marked by the somberness of veiled statues and candles and deep reflection on the Passion of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. So I ask, are you somber?

I know, from my own experience, that there have been years in which a deep somberness would overcome me by Passiontide since I had done nothing to reform my life. I did not engage in more diligent prayer, fasting, worship, or giving. I was not turning from my sins, nor did I change direction. I had great intentions at the beginning, on Ash Wednesday, but did not take any concrete steps. I would feel that, well, it is too late now… In other years I would start off wonderfully and then get stuck and would start going backward. So the question many somber people ask: Am I too late?

The scripture above from Jeremiah 29:13 says no. God’s infinite mercy says no. The very fact that we feel a somberness in ourselves is proof of God’s acting on us to change, turn away from sin, and go in His way. Is it easy to change, to yank the sinfulness out of ourselves, and to walk more closely with Jesus? No, it does take work – but turning with our whole heart has the full support and assistance of the Holy Spirit, our Guardian Angel, and the whole Church. So we must not despair nor be somber. We must start now. What makes a difference is setting aside the idea of intention. ‘I intend to’ is no more than words. We have to act. The Prophet Joel told us on Ash Wednesday: rend your hearts and not your clothing. That statement means we cannot just stand on the intention of change and return without ever doing anything. Intention is no better than tearing our clothes, an outward appearance. Rather, even today, we can actually change our hearts, our whole self, and find God waiting to embrace us. Seek wholeheartedly and find Him.


Welcome to our April 2022 Newsletter. At the start of April we enter Passiontide, then Holy Week, and finally arrive at Easter. We have tons of opportunities to finish Lent well with daily Holy Mass, Stations of the Cross, Bitter Lamentations / Gorzkie Żale, and our directed giving program. We invite you to join us for all things Holy Week and Easter. During the Easter Season we will also hold a welcome back/renewal day. Beyond all that, read about our engagement to help Ukrainian refugees.

There’s more to check out as well: We have blessed Polish Easter Baskets for sale (a portion of the proceed will be donated to Ukranian relief efforts), our amazing Basket Social is April 24th at the South Schenectady Firehouse, we are planning for the wonderful activites coming up Churchwide, and now is the time to apply for music scholarships.

All this and more in our April 2022 Newsletter.

As part of the Polish National Catholic Church’s efforts to support the Ukraine and Ukrainian refugees, we first and foremost encourage prayer for the people of Ukraine and for peace in the world. We ask prayers especially for the wounded, the dying, and all the victims of this horrible war, as well as for the Ukrainians seeking to defend their liberty and freedom. 

We are also taking up a collection to provided needed supplies and housing. These funds will be sent to our sister Church, the Polish Catholic Church (Kościół Polskokatolicki) which has been giving support and caring for Ukrainian refugees that have come across the border into Poland. A number of parishes in the southern portion of Poland have been providing relief to refugees as well as delivering aid to the border.

You may send a check made out to Holy Name of Jesus noted as “Ukrainian Assistance.” Our address is 1040 Pearl St., Schenectady, NY 12303, You may also use the form below to donate via credit card.

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Please join us throughout Lent for Holy Mass and Devotions. These are all opportunities, beyond Sundays, to focus time on prayer.

  • Ash Wednesday – Holy Mass and Distribution of Ashes at Noon and 7pm.
  • Lenten Sundays – Holy Mass at 10am and Noon every Sunday.
  • Daily Holy Mass, Monday through Friday at Noon.
  • Stations of the Cross every Friday at 3pm.
  • Bitter Lamentations / Gorzkie Żale every Sunday at 3pm.

And this is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it on the last day.

What happens when we die?

It is one of the greatest questions of all time and inquiring minds want to know: What should we expect after we die? What will it look like? Yet, it is exceedingly difficult to answer. No one has come back and filled us in. But we do have guideposts to inform us.

We do know that there are absolutes, heaven and hell. Scriptures tell us that much. We know heaven is paradise and that it is reserved for the holy ones of God. Revelation gives us a picture of what heaven will look like, a place with no more mourning, weeping, pain or fear. Jesus also gave us examples of what Gehenna will be like, a fiery garbage dump where those who lived lives apart from God wail and gnash their teeth. We know from the story of Lazarus the beggar that there is an uncrossable boundary between heaven and hell. Those things give us a fruitful heads-up, a forewarning that no – everyone does not just go to heaven. To say so is in fact heresy.

We know our path starts with faith, faith in Jesus Christ. We need to confess our sins and give ourselves completely to Him. Through baptism and our cognizant profession of faith we are members in His body, and we are washed in His blood. From there, we embark on the path of sanctification – the process of becoming more and more like Jesus. That is why we can never take a break or slowdown in following Jesus. There is always more to become.

This process of becoming and growing in faith is so important because it is an act of caring and cognition – how we live matters. If everyone just goes to heaven, then why Church, why prayer, why the sacraments, why do anything good, why care. If I’m going there anyway nothing really matters. Yes, how we live, how faithful we are matters. How we place our trust in the Father, how we follow the Son’s gospel path and become more like Him, and how we live out the promptings of the Holy Spirit in Strength of Faith one-hundred-percent matters.

Indeed, something happens when we die. We do not just disappear.

The Church, throughout is history, has come up with different theories about what happens after death. At one time, it was thought that the soul did not actually leave the earth for three days – thus one of the purpose of wakes and the funeral on the third day, as well as the Absolution of the Dead. 

Rome placed its bets on the idea of Purgatory, a place of purification – imagine a car with a whole bunch of souls saying – are we there yet? The suffering that leads to purification is achieved in the waiting, in the expectation of desire and longing. The important thing here is the theme of waiting.

The Orthodox do not have any one theory, instead stating that anything we think about the afterlife is ‘speculative theology,’ a theology that tries to define the future by what we do know about God. For this reason, in Orthodoxy, there is diversity in the teachings on what happens after death. This diversity is perfectly okay because attempts at explanation are feeble before the mystery of God. Key concepts are that the soul has awareness, does not lose it identity, and awaits the resurrection of the body because, like Jesus, both body and soul are equally important. Note again the theme of waiting.

There is quite a bit of diversity of thought about what happens immediately after death among Protestants. Most believe that we retain our unique identities after death. Some denominations believe the soul goes immediately to be with Christ in heaven, awaiting the Day of Judgment and a resurrected body. This echoes Paul – but remember that Paul was speaking to Christian communities that were living out their faith deeply and wholeheartedly, often to the point of sacrificial loss. Other Protestants suggest there is an intermediate time of “soul sleep,” an unconscious waiting for the resurrection.

Do the dead go to Sheol – the Jewish concept of a holding tank for souls? No, for Christ emptied that place following His death on the cross.

Further, for our study, Christianity never has taught reincarnation. There is no return trip. While fanciful, it is totally against scripture. Our lives are a what you see is what you get matter.

So why do we pray for the dead, and what is today’s Observance all about?

The Latin phrase Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi literally means “the rule of prayer [is] the rule of belief.” More simply said, we pray what we believe. We pray for the departed based on scriptural instruction and most importantly because of the mystery of the afterlife. We pray for the dead because we believe they need our prayer in a period of waiting.

In the Book of Maccabees (2 Maccabees 12:39-46), Judas Maccabee takes up a collection so prayers will be said for some of his soldiers that had died. Factually, the soldiers were being faithful in fighting for Israel, while at the same time they were unfaithful; their dead bodies were found to be holding idols of false gods. 

And so betaking themselves to prayers, they besought Him, that the sin which had been committed might be forgotten… And making a gathering, he sent twelve thousand drachms of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection… It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins.

We pray because God left us an instruction to do so in Scripture. We pray because we do not know. We pray through the mystery of God, seeking His mercy for our departed loved ones in a time of waiting. Can those not perfectly pure enter heaven by our prayer? Can their sins be forgiven? Is there a place and time of waiting? Our prayer says that is true, and as such we pray and we offer Holy Masses for our departed loved ones, making up by our actions where they had fallen short in life.

This day, in the end, calls us not just to prayer for the dearly departed, but also to an honest evaluation of our own spiritual state, to measure where we are on the road, and toward what destination so that by living genuinely Christian lives and following Jesus’ gospel path more closely we may reduce any time we need to wait in getting there.

As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?

This month, in our years long discipleship study and journey, we are asked to pray both Psalm 42 and 121. Both of these Psalms pose longing and a response to longing. In each, the psalmist realizes that their hope is in God, that help comes from God. The introductory verse to Psalm 42 above is answered: Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. I can meet God by placing my hope in Him and trusting in Him. Our God is a saving God, not a punishing god. Can you imaging being as desirous as a deer in search of clear, cool, running water. The animal, parched with thirst happens upon that exact stream of water and is overjoyed in finding it and drinks deeply. So it is in our heart’s inner desire and need for God. Desire for God may seem more pronounced in difficult times, when we need extreme help for extreme troubles, but truthfully, that longing is always there. Our souls desire unity with God, for He is their source. They want Him for He is their refreshment. The cool, clear, running water of His grace is their answer, and we all seek to drink deeply of that grace. So, how do we do it. How do we find that water and drink of it? How do we meet God? We start by following Jesus’ gospel path. We do the things He said we must do. We live out the beatitudes and the rules from the Sermon on the Mount. We serve and sacrifice. To be a disciple means we live and love our Master’s instruction. Hard, yes. Impossible, no. From there we live in community. We live and worship as one family. This is the God designed, Jesus taught, Holy Spirit infused way we are to go. The cool, clear, running water of grace is found by those who do exactly this. As we follow Jesus’ gospel path He infuses us, through the Holy Spirit, with His grace. We receive actual help from on-high. As we live and worship as family we open the door to grace to others and support each other with that strength from on-high. We lift each other to that fountain of grace and in doing so our longing is answered.

Welcome to our October 2021 Newsletter. This month’s newsletter is filled with information about important events in the life of the parish: our centennial celebration; blessing of pets; healing; the rosary; family; the upcoming observance of All Souls; our discipleship focus on St. Teresa of Avila; and Ten Biblical Reminders for encouragement. We also pause to remember three beloved men who passed into eternal life.

Please come out to join us as we pray mightily, receive the sacraments, learn from the Word, and celebrate.

Check out all this and more in our October 2021 Newsletter.

“But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.”

I have a box. For those who get to church early enough or stay late enough, for the past two years you have seen me walking in and out of church with an old broken down box. The box is my briefcase of sorts. My family often comments: Why don’t you get rid of that old box and just get a briefcase? I don’t say much. I like my box.

This month’s scripture, taken from Matthew 6:33 reminds us of priorities – what comes first, what is most important: But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness.

The box is a reminder to me of what we are celebrating this year, and in a special way how we will begin the month of October. One-hundred years ago people in Schenectady packed bags and boxes. They did not have much. They tread on foot to the corner of Raymond and Van Vranken to build a new church. This would be a church providing them the freedom to seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness. Not long before this momentous event in 1921, these very same people packed boxes and bags and trunks to emigrate to the United States. They sought a better life and the opportunity to add good things to their lives – the dream of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

What is worthy of not just celebration, but also emulation, is that these founders did not separate or compartmentalize seeking the kingdom, righteousness, and a better life. They saw them as God’s way-of-life. They listened to what St. James pointed out: Every good gift and every perfect present comes from heaven; it comes down from God (James 1:17). As we celebrate the centennial of our wonderful parish, as we reflect on the good gifts we have received, let us remember those bags, boxes, and trunks. Let us recall that the search for truth and the achievement of victory took work and struggle. Most importantly, may we too live seeking what is important first, and all these things will be added to us.


Welcome to our September 2021 Newsletter. We are one-month away from our grand centennial celebration and September holds a wide variety of worship events leading up to this momentous occasion. Check out the October 1st through 3rd centennial schedule. In September we celebrate Labor Day, Brotherly Love Sunday, and Back to Church Sunday (who will you invite?). We commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11/2001. We reflect on our summer events and the great things accomplished in our parish, including astounding generosity. Ready for coffee hour? It’s back starting September 12th. Ready for daily Holy Masses? They are returning to parish life. Pray in advance of our Diocesan Synod and reflect on walking with God and each other.

All that we do, all accomplished, a future filled with hope is by God’s good grace and YOUR love and commitment. Thank you!

Check out all this and more here in our September 2021 Newsletter.

Working to change.

In the days when Christ Jesus was in the flesh, He offered prayers and supplications with loud cries and tears to the one who was able to save him from death, and He was heard because of his reverence.

So far in Lent we have focused on the change and reform necessary in our lives. We have been focusing on the various Lenten disciplines, the means and methods by which we achieve conversion, change and reform. These disciplines help us become more ardent and faithful livers of Jesus’s gospel way.

The subjects of fasting, sacrifice (or giving), and study have been covered thus far. Next week we continue with the consideration of proclamation. Today, we focus on prayer.

This year we study from the Gospel according to St. Mark. In the first chapter of that Gospel, we hear that Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. Prayer was a regular part of Jesus’ life. In Mark 11 we hear of Jesus’ cleansing of the Temple: ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations.’ In the same chapter Jesus reminded His disciples of the power of faithful and right prayer: “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”

Jesus’ time on earth was a time of “prayers and petitions.” These two words portray a life of constant and persistent supplication. Not only did Jesus pray constantly and persistently, He prayed fervently. “Fervent cries” could also be translated “loud crying” or even “powerful shouts.” It makes us think of Jesus in Gethsemane, where He was “very sorrowful even to death”: And they went to a place called Gethsemane. And He said to his disciples, “Sit here while I pray…” And going a little farther, He fell on the ground and prayed.

Yet all this still does not exhaust the agonizing depth of Jesus’ prayers, for He prayed “with tears.” Jesus sobbed as He prayed. He threw Himself completely into prayer.

Jesus knew every facet of human suffering. He groaned under the depth of it. Through all this agony, Jesus learned something: He learned what it was like to obey as a suffering human in a fallen world and for that faith He was heard.

We are called to the same constant discipline of prayer that Jesus lived. Our prayer must be faithful and right. Our prayer must not be limited. Our prayer, heartfelt even when it groans without words, must call out to God. With prayer, like Jesus, we learn and are given just what we need to endure and cross into glory.

To be prayed daily as we prepare for Pentecost

In the Name + of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

V. Come, O Holy Ghost, fill the hearts of Your faithful, and enkindle in them the fire of Your love. Send forth Your Spirit and they shall be created.
R. And You will renew the face of the earth.

Let us pray. O Holy Spirit, my Lord and my God, I adore You and humbly acknowledge here in Your sacred presence that I am nothing, and can do nothing, without Your operation within me. Come, great Paraclete, thou Father of the poor, thou Comforter of the blest, fulfill the promise of our Savior, who would not leave us orphans, and enter my mind and heart as You descended on the day of Pentecost upon the holy Mother of Jesus and upon His first disciples. Grant that I may have a part in those gifts which You did so prodigally bestow upon them.

Take from my heart all that is not pleasing to You and make of it a worthy dwelling place for Jesus. Illumine my mind, that I may see and understand the things that are for my eternal welfare. Inflame my heart with pure love of the Father, that, cleansed from attachment to all unworthy objects, my whole life may be hidden with Jesus in God. Strengthen my will, that it may be conformable to the will of my Creator and guided by thy holy inspirations.

Aid me to practice the heavenly virtues of humility, poverty, and obedience which are taught me in the earthly life of Jesus. Descend upon me, O mighty Spirit, that, inspired and encouraged by You, I may faithfully fulfill the duties of my state in life, carry my daily cross with patience and courage, and accomplish the Father’s will for me more perfectly. Make me, day by day, more holy and give to me that heavenly peace which the world cannot give.

O Holy Spirit, Giver of every good and perfect gift, grant to me the intentions of this novena of prayer. May the Father’s will be done in me and through me. And may You, O mighty Spirit of the living God, be praised and glorified for ever and ever. Amen.

Prayer for Friday, May 22nd: Come, O Holy Ghost, the Lord and Life-giver; take up Your dwelling within my soul and make of it Your sacred temple. Make me live by grace as an adopted child of God. Pervade all the energies of my soul and create in me a fountain of living water springing up into life everlasting.

Let us pray: O God, who as at this time did teach the hearts of Your faithful people by sending to them the light of thy Holy Spirit: grant us by the same Spirit to have a right judgment in all things, and evermore to rejoice in His holy comfort. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Then is said the Our Father and Hail Mary and Glory be….

Our Father …
Hail Mary …
Glory be …

Let us pray. Almighty God, You instruct the hearts of the faithful thru the grace of the Holy Spirit, grant us in the same Spirit to be truly wise and to ever rejoice in His comfort, through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen

In the Name + of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Blessed is he who trusts in God Almighty.
And he who hopes in God’s most gracious mercy.
He shall acknowledge: God is my protector.
In life’s dark journey, I shall fear no danger,
I shall fear no danger.

From all the pow’rs of evil God shall save him.
Of nature’s forces, he shall ne’er fall victim.
Under the pinions of the Lord Almighty,
In God’s protection, he shall dwell in safety.
He shall dwell in safety.

Kto się w opiekę odda Panu Swemu,
A całym sercem szczerze ufa Jemu,
Śmiele rzec może: Mam obrońcę Boga,
Nie przyjdzie na mnie żadna straszna trwoga,
żadna straszna trwog

2.Ciebie On z łowczych obieży wyzuje
I w zaraźliwym powietrzu ratuje,
W cieniu Swych skrzydeł zachowa cię wiecznie,
Pod Jego pióry uleżysz bezpiecznie,
uleżysz bezpiecznie

PNCC Hymnal #196

On Friday, March 13, 2020 the active Bishops and Diocesan Administrators of the Holy Polish National Catholic Church (PNCC) gathered to discuss the implications of the Covid-19 outbreak and a number of national events that will be taking place within the Holy Church. In making these decisions, consideration was given to the recommendations of the CDC and other local health agencies, the size of these events, the demographics of those attending and other factors.

The attached letter regarding the postponement or cancellation of PNCC National Events addresses the results of these discussions.

Attached too is a Statement concerning the current state of affairs in the Holy Church and Covid-19.

In short: As followers of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, we are all called to be people of care, compassion and community. This care must be for our own parishioners and also to extend beyond them to the needs of those around us. 

At the present time, the celebration of Holy Mass will continue in each parish. All parishioners are exempted from their obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days. If they are sick, in vulnerable conditions (immunocompromised, in vulnerable risk groups), or even if they are concerned about the possibility of contracting the virus parishioners should stay at home. In any of these situations we encourage parishioners to stay at home and join with the congregation through the reading of the Word of God and prayer.

In our parish you may participate in Holy Mass on Sundays at 9:30am on Facebook. We also post our Holy Mass to YouTube later in the day on Sunday. Become a subscriber to be notified when video is posted to YouTube.

Bishop Hodur reminded the faithful that a Sunday should not go by without us being fed by the Word of God.

As Catholic Christians we are called to be compassionate and caring to all. Please support our parishioners and worshipers in the decisions that they make regarding their own health and show loving kindness in supporting and sustaining those who may be in need. Suggestions for mutual support and charity include care for the homebound and the delivery of needed supplies, telephone calls, online social gatherings, the sending of cards and letters. Continue especially to pray for our Church and for one another that our Lord may see us through these difficult and distressing times.

Prayer in Time of National Anxiety

I come to You, Lord, in this time of uncertainty and confusion that has gripped our nation. I pray that our leaders and representatives in government are filled with Your peace, strength and courage. May Your gifts of wisdom and understanding, fortitude and counsel be sought and utilized by them for the well-being of our country. By their belief and trust in You may they provide capable leadership, promote unity and peace, and be attentive to the concerns of our people. May Your Church provide support and comfort and help strengthen our hope for peace through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.